Extra Punctuation: What is Mature Anyway?

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Thyunda:

jjofearth:
Hullo there. Genuine thirteen-year-old. From what I've seen and demo'ed of DN:F (I don't want to buy it - inb4 pocket money jokes), it appears to be a piece of juvenile, asinine, objectifying, quasi-misogynistic (I added the prefix because of the hordes of people who seem to think that preventing hatred [and it is hatred {really, I can't think of a single reason within the context of the game to have naked ladies other than because <Haha, nested brackets, you've forgotten what I was talking about>...well, naked ladies }in every sense of the word] is an affront to free speech) Frankenstein-ic, zombified, petrified, archaeologically fascinating, and fundamentally, necessarily *immature* game.

Or, you know. It's kinda lame.

I was considering buying it until that part with the alien hive and the breasts on the wall that you could slap. That really turned me off the game. Not because it has breasts...but because they're not actually breasts, they're alien tit things. And you slap them. For no real purpose.
That whole business with the spanking the girls in the capture the babe mode? That's in context. Didn't care about that. But why wall-tits?

I'll tell you why wall-tits. Because BOOBIES.
Why does the game open with your character getting a blowjob? Because BOOBIES.
Why do you look up people's skirts when you're shrunken? Ok, admittedly this was an interesting idea, but it's fairly obvious to me that the fundamental reason was simply so that you could look up skirts. The game appears to be filled with unnecessary boobs - or, very necessary boobs given this game's target demographic. It's just a bit embarassing to watch it really. It's a little like this idiotic child in my PE class who thinks that swearing and talking about genitalia, CONSTANTLY, makes him infinitely cool. Bear strongly in mind, no-one likes this child. And DN:F is that child. It's like it has visual, boob-related tourettes syndrome. Anytime it tries to be a game with any semblance of cohesive plot and theme other than mammaries, it accidentally shouts out "BOOOOOBS" and all of a sudden tits of the stonking great variety appear everywhere.

I agree that the system is flawed. I live in Britain and we have the BBFC (or PEGI) deciding the rating on the games. And they litterally are just tick sheets to fill in while watching a film/game and if the media fits a certain criteria then it becomes a 12,15 or 18 etc.

Some games use these ratings as a selling point (see Manhunt) and some films cut things out to get a lower one (see star wars episode 3 re: Anikin headbutting Mace). This is just plain stupid.

Further more, what really gets me annoyed is parents. They are the ones that seem to condem games yet they ignore the ratings! When I worked in a game shop parenst would constantly buy kids GTA IV just because their friends had it, I would ask some times "would you let you're kids watch a film with prositiutes in it?" their answer would always be "no...are there prostitiutes in this game?". The ratings do serve a purpose to a certain type of people and if those people choose to ignore those warnings, well thats up to them.

In the mean time, it doesnt effect me. I'm 22

jjofearth:

Thyunda:

jjofearth:
Hullo there. Genuine thirteen-year-old. From what I've seen and demo'ed of DN:F (I don't want to buy it - inb4 pocket money jokes), it appears to be a piece of juvenile, asinine, objectifying, quasi-misogynistic (I added the prefix because of the hordes of people who seem to think that preventing hatred [and it is hatred {really, I can't think of a single reason within the context of the game to have naked ladies other than because <Haha, nested brackets, you've forgotten what I was talking about>...well, naked ladies }in every sense of the word] is an affront to free speech) Frankenstein-ic, zombified, petrified, archaeologically fascinating, and fundamentally, necessarily *immature* game.

Or, you know. It's kinda lame.

I was considering buying it until that part with the alien hive and the breasts on the wall that you could slap. That really turned me off the game. Not because it has breasts...but because they're not actually breasts, they're alien tit things. And you slap them. For no real purpose.
That whole business with the spanking the girls in the capture the babe mode? That's in context. Didn't care about that. But why wall-tits?

I'll tell you why wall-tits. Because BOOBIES.
Why does the game open with your character getting a blowjob? Because BOOBIES.
Why do you look up people's skirts when you're shrunken? Ok, admittedly this was an interesting idea, but it's fairly obvious to me that the fundamental reason was simply so that you could look up skirts. The game appears to be filled with unnecessary boobs - or, very necessary boobs given this game's target demographic. It's just a bit embarassing to watch it really. It's a little like this idiotic child in my PE class who thinks that swearing and talking about genitalia, CONSTANTLY, makes him infinitely cool. Bear strongly in mind, no-one likes this child. And DN:F is that child. It's like it has visual, boob-related tourettes syndrome. Anytime it tries to be a game with any semblance of cohesive plot and theme other than mammaries, it accidentally shouts out "BOOOOOBS" and all of a sudden tits of the stonking great variety appear everywhere.

Well...why does the game open with my character getting a blowjob? Because he's obviously so manly, girls just cannot resist. Why do I look up character's skirts when I'm shrunken? Because I bloody well want to. Otherwise I wouldn't.
I don't mind tits if they're attached to some form of woman's chest...or if they're there to shout "I'm Duke Nukem and I love big ol' titties!" But slappable alien wall-tits? That one is a bit too far.

Yahtzee's points reminded me of something I heard on the one episode of GameTrailers TV I've ever watched. They were doing a preview of the new Twisted Metal game that's coming out, and they were highlighting one of the arenas, where you could eject spectators from the stands and run over them.

"You can run over the spectators? And this has a T-rating?"

"Well, there's no blood, so we're safe!"

That really just got me thinking. It doesn't matter how disturbing or gruesome an act of violence is in a video game, it's just how explicit it is, that earns it a higher or lower rating. The Dark Knight analogy, with the pencil scene, is another perfect example of this. No blood, so it's not explicit, so it's fine for the whole family!

The more i read of this the more i agree. rating system doesn't work, and it never did. it was created because people are too stupid or lazy to parent their own kids and expect someone else to do it for them. For kids rating system does two things. One is causing them to whine and another is causing them to pirate. Just because a game is 18+ does not make them stop wanting to play it. And if shops or parents refuse to allow them to buy it, they just download it. So in a sense ratings are actually bad for business.
It is amazing how rating system is still used by anyone. then again first law of stupidity says that there is always more stupid people than you think.

What I think can be done is advertising WHY a game is meant for kids, teens, or adults by making use of the box the game comes in. Imagine that... Rather than floating heads on a backdrop that only kind of/sort of comes from the game, why not have pictures from the cutscenes? Or perhaps even artwork of things the protagonist/s do throughout the game; be it fighting, racing, seducing, or running around with a chicken sitting on their head.

It's not like it's too hard to take one frame of a cutscene, cut off the edges, and shrink it down. Not to mention you're making better use of the covers than showing off the nostrils or forehead of mostly ignored characters for the reason that "They look good". Maybe I'm just sick of seeing character profiles when shopping and being forced to sift through half a dozen reviews to get any idea of what the game is about, much less whether it's really any good.

These people on here have some interesting opinions on the subject.
Personally i agree with yahtzee.

And thus we see the moral decay of the past hundred years. Violence is funny, especially when it's unrealistic. Sex is funny, as long as you show nothing "inappropriate". It's like many games trivialize things that should be important. (Hmmmmm... Maybe that's why people have a hard time accepting video games as a valid art form?) It's not like it's hard. Take a look at Homefront. Regardless of the flaws in the gameplay, the non-combat violence you observe in the cutscenes invokes quite a bit of gravity and emotion. In the same way, Mass Effect approaches sexuality from a relationship standpoint, rather than "Oooo tities", making for a more convincing and believable relationship. (As far as sex scenes go, ME2 proved you don't actually need to show "tities" or anything else to make a great "mature" sexual event.) I just wish most games would get over their own immature self image and treat themselves seriously. (Honestly, I'd like to see a game take the path of Thor and offer a meaningful romance without resorting to a pointless screw scene. Yeah, some people will feel gipped, but do you really want to cater to those that would feel gipped by not ogling two people "loving it up"?) Anyway, that's a whole long paragraph of my opinion that no-one asked for. Still feels good to get it out though.

P.S. ESRB, and the movie rating system for that matter, should come up with a new rating category. The +18 C, which is a place to put all those games and movies full of immature comedy that is too inappropriate for minors. I nickname it the Construction Worker category.

The_root_of_all_evil:
Preach it brother.

You want something that scares you far more than anything an 18 certificate puts out?

Oh man, that movie - animated films about rabbits of all things really have no business being so genuinely horrifying to, you know, children, the audience most likely to see cartoon bunnies and become intrigued (and then traumatized). In my case it was a classic application of "Oh hey, a cartoon about rabbits - that will be totally appropriate to make our children sit down and watch, yes sirree!" years later when it was out on video (since the film itself was released a few years before I was actually born), whereupon it promptly entered my "Why the hell did you let me watch that when I was a kid?!" mental filing cabinet.

But it does strike me that sharing that anecdote or bringing the film up with this audience is a sure-fire confirmation that you're a card carrying member of the "old person club" - would kids these days even recognize the subject matter of that caption?

Gildan Bladeborn:

But it does strike me that sharing that anecdote or bringing the film up with this audience is a sure-fire confirmation that you're a card carrying member of the "old person club" - would kids these days even recognize the subject matter of that caption?

whereupon it promptly entered my "Why the hell did you let me watch that when I was a kid?!" mental filing cabinet.

You've answered your own question. *moustache twirl*

cjbos81:
Maybe the characters from "mortal kombat" are eunuchs. It's cruel of you to mock them.

I'm not an expert on that or anything, but I think a eunuch only has the testicles removed. So there would still be "something" there, if you get what I mean.

Jumwa:
I wish we lived in a rational enough world where ratings weren't necessary. Where we could all be reasonable enough to just put down something we don't like or agree with and not kick a stink about it. Or trust that people will parent their own kids without demanding the government or all of society do it for them.

Unfortunately I don't live in a time and place that really allows for that kind of expectation. Instead the North American expectation is that we all must child-proof our world and lie to kids about stuff they probably already know.

:) I reject your reality, and put in its place my own.
Now, please excuse me. I must go view the 20th episode of Top 5, and then watch the 60th episode of Doomsday Arcade where Yahtzee becomes the 3rd main character. :)

(Disclaimer: Its a JOKE!!! The shows be dead. :( )
(( Disclaimer Disclaimer: That last bit of bad grammar was on purpose.))

Dfskelleton:
For once, I agreed with everything Yahtzee has said. One more vote for the "Fuck it" rating system.
Also, I noticed on these forums that a few of the people that have condemned DNF solely for being immature also have My Little Pony avatars.

To be fair, MLP is a good bit more "mature" than DNF. Hell I'd go as far as saying MLP is even more realistic than DNF, and its got freaking talking ponies for lords sake!

Good article. Another thought I had to add to this is if cartoons from the past, like Bugs Bunny, even up to Ren and Stimpy were released TODAY, they'd get a TV-MA rating. Even in the old WB cartoons, there was so much violence and there were even a few scenes that could be traumatic to some kids. Funny/sad thing too is, I'm pretty sure that Ren and Stimpy were what contributed to the whole tv rating BS.

Oh Yahtzee. Sometimes you're so right and sometimes you're so silly. Good mix tho.

First of all, the idea behind the "Mature" tag isn't that the game is mature, but that only grown-ups should play it. Obviously the train of thought behind this decision is that grown-ups have an already established set of values (or at least it's expected of them), so there is no risk of a kid getting the wrong idea about sex or violence and doesn't get the joke, parody or fantasy different from reality.
How big this risk actually is is another thing altogether, but I've witnessed people thick enough to believe it is real. Anyway, I didn't see that pop up in your article at all.

Second, about censorship of genitals. I think it's a Western thing as stuff from Japan is notoriously more liberal with sexuality, both in character design and actual storytelling that doesn't shy from discussing such matters. I don't actually remember playing a Japanese game (or the devs hid that fact well), but word gets around, so I know a bit about Persona, that one weird E3 puzzle game (Catherine? Something like that) and... well, look at the FF cast.
On the other hand, violence seems to be more of an issue, DON'T YOU DARE MENTION THE NUKE; IT'S NOT A NUKE, IT'S AN Nē MINE, DANGIT! So the cultural values seem to be inverted here for one reason or another (mostly historically influenced I suppose).

Lastly, and to strengthen my first point made, there are plenty of games out there that aren't rated M, but I'd still call mature in nature or tone, such as Homeworld, or games that at least aren't completely immature or "just aimed at kids". I always seem to have to mention that just because it's for kids, it doesn't have to be dumbed down crap from Cartoon Network or Looney Toones. Flameshield up, but personally, I never found those two appealing at all for reasons implied.

So the real questions should be:
What makes a game mature?
What makes a game deserve the Mature rating?

P.S.
I think especially Western producers should really get together to produce a game with believable romance in the center, and include sex, why not.
Mass Effect did a little step in that direction, but it was very focused on sex in my opinion (a few kind words and a healthy amount of interest in cultures not fully explained in the manual/codex - and most importantly no actual chemistry - and suddenly someone asks you if you have condoms with you. WTF) and the actual sex was pretty much non-existent.
Tho I should be grateful for that considering the hideous MoCap and Sherperds outright creepy uncanny BioWare face. Any interaction it other objects, be it drinking, hugging, kissing, just looks plain wrong with MoCap, even worse than normal MoCap - IMO

I think the industry would benefit greatly from an increased demand for cock-jiggle programmers. Lord knows the boob-jiggle and butt-jiggle professions are over-saturated with talent, and it'd be a shame to lose those bright young minds to unemployment.

More seriously, the dichotomy between Western culture's views of sex and those of violence has always been very disturbing to me.

Imp Emissary:

Dfskelleton:
For once, I agreed with everything Yahtzee has said. One more vote for the "Fuck it" rating system.
Also, I noticed on these forums that a few of the people that have condemned DNF solely for being immature also have My Little Pony avatars.

To be fair, MLP is a good bit more "mature" than DNF. Hell I'd go as far as saying MLP is even more realistic than DNF, and its got freaking talking ponies for lords sake!

I'm sorry, but at what point was Duke Nukem supposed to be realistic? That's absolute nonsense. Also, My Little Pony is mature? I suppose it is compared to Duke Nukem, a game that is specifically designed to be as immature as possible, but I've forced myself to watch an episode, and the most mature thing I detected was me groaning in agony.

Alphalpha:

More seriously, the dichotomy between Western culture's views of sex and those of violence has always been very disturbing to me.

You could make a very good case that they boil down to this:

Nocta-Aeterna:

Dfskelleton:

Imp Emissary:

Dfskelleton:
For once, I agreed with everything Yahtzee has said. One more vote for the "Fuck it" rating system.

I'm sorry, but at what point was Duke Nukem supposed to be realistic? That's absolute nonsense. Also, My Little Pony is mature? I suppose it is compared to Duke Nukem, a game that is specifically designed to be as immature as possible, but I've forced myself to watch an episode, and the most mature thing I detected was me groaning in agony.

Ha ha ha. Well you can't please everyone. (By more mature, I meant not trying to only use poop, piss, and awkward pop-culture references as a means to entertain. Oh, boobs too.)

Also, as for your question about who thought DNF would be realistic, I can tell you it was not me, but I was hopeful that it wouldn't be as bad as it turned out to be.

Oh, and I too well vote for the Fuck it system. :)

Mature is when the cursing is kept to a minimum, when the gore is not exaggerated and sex is not the be all, end all of life.

Gman6789:

General Vagueness:
I hadn't heard of A Serbian Movie before... so of course I Googled it... does anyone have some mind bleach?

If you ever find any give me some!

I Googled pictures of cats and puppies and that seemed to help, but it wasn't a cure.

sorry about the double post, I forgot I was adding to something and I thought I hit Escape soon enough

Considering sex to be more scandalous than violence is a protestant\puritan heritage in UK and the US. In the rest of the world, you would rather see your son kiss a girl than playing with guns.

Marik Bentusi:
First of all, the idea behind the "Mature" tag isn't that the game is mature, but that only grown-ups should play it. Obviously the train of thought behind this decision is that grown-ups have an already established set of values (or at least it's expected of them), so there is no risk of a kid getting the wrong idea about sex or violence and doesn't get the joke, parody or fantasy different from reality.
How big this risk actually is is another thing altogether, but I've witnessed people thick enough to believe it is real. Anyway, I didn't see that pop up in your article at all.

Well put, better than most or all of my attempts.

Marik Bentusi:
Second, about censorship of genitals. I think it's a Western thing as stuff from Japan is notoriously more liberal with sexuality, both in character design and actual storytelling that doesn't shy from discussing such matters.

Are you kidding? Japan is way more stringent about that, you can't buy stuff with uncensored genitals unless it's a medical book and you're a doctor, and even then you have to know where to look. However this started during the Victorian era, which is when they first made contact with the west, and the first time they made significant contact with anyone in I think 700 years-- for some reason they really seized on certain values, even though Christianity didn't make inroads as much as in some other Asian/west Pacific areas, particularly Korea.

Marik Bentusi:
I always seem to have to mention that just because it's for kids, it doesn't have to be dumbed down crap from Cartoon Network or Looney Toones. Flameshield up, but personally, I never found those two appealing at all for reasons implied.

I can kind of see where you're coming from with Cartoon Network, but Looney Tunes? I liked it when I was a kid before I knew it was old/classic and I could watch a lot of those shows now and still laugh.

Usually the more 'mature themes' a game is supposed to have the more immature it is. Looking at it logically a mature game would contain themes and deal with subjects that only people past a certain age and or level of maturity have a grasp of. RPGs in particular have hit the mark here occasionally and moral ambiguity and shades of grey seem to be very in vogue at the moment. The Witcher and the Witcher 2 did this pretty well in my opinion, although they were helped by the excellent pre-existing source material and the fact that CD Projekt Red is a small European studio.

Take for example the Scioa'tel, they are ultimately terrorists, but terrorist with a bloody strong case. The problem is that Geralt is pretty much the only person in the world who is uniquely positioned to see, understand and sympathise with both sides of the struggle. To me this raises the question of how much is our view of issues such as, oh I don't know, the war on terror influenced, by our limited perspective and perception of events. Of course Geralt himself is a torn person and outsider struggling to understand his role in society. Not just in terms of the human/non-human struggle but also the fact that his traditional role and employment as a monster slayer is becoming increasingly redundant.

OMFG...ever since I read this E.P. I just couldn't resist looking up and watching "A Serbian Film". Now I have and I'm pretty much gonna be mentally scarred for the rest of my life...or like, one month. Still, thanks alot Yahtzee -_-

We live in an interresting world, where Violence is seen as an lesser Evil compared to Sex. Altho it always strikes me, how sumthing as unnatural as Murder and violence is presented eaven to kids and younger Audience without any second thoughts, sex and erotika, one of our natural and most primal instincts, earns an 18+ Rating outright (By thing, i rather mean tastefull stuff, not the ones ya see on DevArt and Internet ;3). Only cultural reason behind this, as far as i can see, is the influence of Religion on the Society, as well as the Society itself. The guys that currently run the whole media think its their duty to protect the minds of the innocent children, hoping to prevent em turning into lustfull, sexcrazed deviants - while on other hand letting the violence slide rather unnoticed (not that it didnt caused any fuss, but yeah).
The Problem with games in general is that they are viewed as children toys, and having bewbs in there means that children gonna see em - doesnt matter if the game says 18+. People rather go on crusade against the Game Companies before they controll what they kids are playing.
Does Violence with consequences and normal view of Human sexuality make game moar Mature? Yes and No. Eaven if the games turn over towards mature audience and abandon the kiddies, what is the thing we ask from games? We want sum Fun, escapism. If the game comes with an Lesson to teach, to speak about certain thematic - Its sumthing most people wish, but it would only turn the Game Media into Movies or Litterature and possibly move away from the Fun Factor. So rather then asking ourselves how to move up and finaly become Art, we should rather ask ourselves, how to finaly get the whole Fuss about "Corrupting small children" off our back :3 Maybe then, we can have xray cawks to view in Mortal Combat

Kahunaburger:

Alphalpha:

More seriously, the dichotomy between Western culture's views of sex and those of violence has always been very disturbing to me.

You could make a very good case that they boil down to this:

Nocta-Aeterna:

What the hell is that from?

Honestly, though, that's probably the most coherent argument I've heard in support of it.

I have yet to see a game rated M that doesn't deserve an M rating. Whether it is for the constant use of blood and gore (I'll admit I would flinch at that when I was kid, but now that I'm older and I've lost my soul, I don't care) or swear words (Yes, kids don't need video games to learn new words but come on, let's not infuriate dumb parents more than necessary) or nudity.

However, I'll admit I would expect M rated games to be handled more, well, maturely. But that's just my own wish. It's like comparing American Pie with Schindler's List; both wouldn't be apt for kids but one of them is about retarded asswipes being douches and the other one is more dramatic and serious.

I'll agree with the fact that if a game is willing to add nudity into a game, then do it correctly and all the way. Don't shy away as if you were the local perv hiding inside a locker in the girls' dressing room. If you're gonna use gore, show real gore. Don't just show mild gore scenes or, like MK did, cartoony depictions of gore that do not follow some of the game's same standards.

A couple of examples come to mind:

-Gore in games: Like Yahtzee said, if you're using gore and going as far as to add an X ray view where you can bones being shattered in great detail and eyeballs being pierces, then why not who wieners being cut in half? I mean, since you already pushed the envelope that back, why back away then?
-Nudity in games: I recall playing God of War and watching half naked whores wiggle in anticipation as Kratos approached them. Now, I'm not being a perv, but why are whores always shown from the breasts up? I know they're naked, I know their purpose, so why not show the rest? That just makes it look wrong. Like if the game is saying "Hey, check out a pseudo sex scene. But it's not exactly that! It's just hinting at it. So if your parents ask, it could be anything!". Another example would be Dragon Age: Origins and the camp scene. I was seriously expecting to see naked people having sex, not people wearing ridiculous underwear and flashing scenes of giving each other what looked like back massages. Again, it's not like I want porn in my games. But you have this realistic games where you must be wise during battle, where each set of armor counts, where your decisions change lives and when the sex scene comes up, it doesn't seem/feel real.

I know that games are just avoiding another Hot Coffee scandal. And I know that thanks to that dreadful AO rating, games will do anything to avoid falling into that category unless they want to go bankrupt. And I hate that games will never be able to cross that boundary set up by people who are not even gamers. M rated games are, by nature, aimed towards adults. If a kid plays GoW and sees something he cannot unsee, it's ultimately not his fault. The kid was curious and tested his luck. It all goes down to the parent; it's their fault for not supervising their child.
I hate the fact that games are seen as villains. A movie like, let's say, Terminator 1 has a very explicit sex scene where you can see a lot of things going on. That's usually cut off the TV adaptations but it's there. So is it considered porn? No, because it's just like a 2 minute scene. But if it was a video game, you bet it would get an AO rating.

But again, sadly, we won't be able to break away from that because you'll always have the dumb parents asking...
image

Also, I enjoyed the Catcher in the Rye reference.

Be happy, that you don't live in Germany!
Because we have an "institution", that can ban any media (books, games, films, ...) when they are to gory, sexual, hateful, ... many game companies change the game just for "us"!
i.e. the classic Command&Conquer game was changed that there are no humans but robots fighting and they had blue "blood" instead of red. Just because they were afraid it would be banned or only got a "18" rating and so couldn't be sold that much! They do this with movies too; my favorite is still "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" where they cut out the part, where the priest grabs into a mans chest and takes out the heart! Really great! So you don't understand what's going on in the end, when they are hanging at the bridge and they scream "Beware Indy, he wants your heart!" ...

That's the reason I always get video games/movies that are like to be censored from i.e. amazon.co.uk! Also they are cheaper there!

books are never rated really, Maybe make it a chore to access the gore. And the kiddies will give up caring.

Anyway this is old hat, yes well done rating systems never work and the governments are shallow minded and out of touch as anyone can become a political person, as it's opinion. And no one will ever agree. no one wants to be ruled by another's morales. ETc fecking etc.

The fucking topless scenes in Heavy Rain bugged the crap out of me for precisely these reasons. Making a big deal out of edgy things (like that ridiculous dream sequence that's clearly just there for the sex-power fantasy) is by it's nature not edgy or mature, because edgy and mature people DON'T MAKE a big deal out of those things. That's what makes them mature. The violent men that scare us are the ones who do violence to others and don't think very much of it.

I remember, for example, how when I lost my virginity at 17 there was a good deal of gossip about it amongst my friends. 2 or 3 years later (like six months) a couple of those same friends almost walked in one my girlfriend and I in my dorm room. That time we had a chuckle and a couple high fives (I'm kind of a bro, I know), and that was it.

It's not that I or we have diminished sex drives compared to when we were teenagers, but once you see boobs in real life the whole idea becomes way less fascinating. It's not that it's less important, but the fact that we're adults and it's no longer a forbidden, "holy shit" thing is what makes us adult about sex. Heavy Rain shoves it in your face, "LOOK! FUCKING TITTIES!" If you're not 14, you're like, "Oh jeez, how crazy. Nipples. What a novel idea."

So yeah, I agree with Yahtzee. Rather than, "OMG THE PROTAGONIST HAD SEXXXXX," it's much more mature to say, "The protagonist wakes up in bed next to a naked women he barely remembers, and [blah story blah].

I'm going to go with MovieBob on this one with respect that the truth behind those missing penises is simpler than you proposed. I doubt they were removed or abstained from because the artist who rendered them wasn't comfortable making a penis. It's more likely that it was cheaper not to include them.

So Practicality > Immaturity.

The point I would like to make is that the age categories used by ratings boards are typically the minimum level of maturity they expect the player to have in order to respond to the content in a reasonable manner. I do not believe that the level of maturity with which the game itself treats its own content is generally addressed, though it might be said that a certain level of maturity on the part of the game could "make up" for the immaturity of the player by providing an example of how you are expected to respond. Sex and violence that are presented without any regard to the consequences might seem perfectly okay to someone who is not mature enough to know otherwise, while giving some indication of consequence or how a mature person would respond might lead them to more acceptable conclusions. This might also shed some light on the difference between sex and violence, since many of the possible consequences of violence (death, injury, retaliation, police pursuit and incarceration) are more obvious and/or immediate than the possible consequences of sex (disease and pregnancy). Along with the fact that sex is just more pleasant than violence, this means that it is easier to show violence in a more balanced way than it is for sex.

Please keep in mind that this entire argument is based on opinion as I try to view the issue from the position of those who actually assign these ratings.

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